I have a friend that's looking to get into biking. She'll just be doing some simple stuff, paved trails and maybe some wooded areas once she's comfortable enough. We're looking at a 5'2" girl with rent, car payments and a retail job that's ending soon.
So unfortunately her price is limited to $150-$250. I know it leaves very little to work with, but that's really all she can afford without having to eat ramen and driving to work on fumes for a month. Are there any brand names, Giant, Gary Fisher, Jamis, or such, that anyone can suggest for that price range? It just doesn't pay to buy a crap bike that'll have to be replaced in a year or two. And I really don't want to curse my wrenches by touching a huffy.